Archive for the ‘Sports’ Category

Kevin Durant came back from a calf injury in Game 5 of the NBA Championship… only to rupture his Achilles Tendon.

I agree with the popular opinion:  Tragic.

I also agree with the other popular opinion:  What a fighter… a warrior!

Having KD in there was awesome.  Easy to tell with his offense.  But I thought the real advantage was his defense.  The Raptors, who have been driving to the basket with regularity, couldn’t get around KD’s speed & massive wingspan.  Indeed, it was clear the Warrior defense simply played at a different level with KD in there.

But, I may be the only one to have some additional, random odd thoughts about this as well:

  • Did anyone else feel guilty because we all secretly wanted KD to play, and all secretly thought the calf injury couldn’t be that bad?  I certainly was feeling guilty… and the press was no help.  But then I thought about it:  I was told it was a calf injury… which is certainly surmountable with a full 30 days of professional physical therapy.  If we were told it wasn’t actually a calf injury but it affected the Achilles, too, I am positive there’s not a single person that would have expected him to play.  So I don’t want to feel guilty for rooting for a terrific player to come back given the information we were given.
  • Did anyone see that massive ice pack they put around KD’s calf when he first came out of the game?  I originally thought, “uh, oh, that can’t be good.”  And then I thought about it… and decided that was smart to keep any swelling down.  Now that I think about it, though, it also froze all the muscles and ligaments… which could have contributed to making the Achilles vulnerable.  I wonder if any physical therapists are rethinking that strategy today?
  • Steve Kerr is obviously brilliant.  But, I wonder why he didn’t rest KD longer during the game?  The Warriors seemed like they had things in hand… and, after all, KD hadn’t played for 30 days, you would think he would have wanted to play him sparingly… ?
  • Final odd thought:  When he torn his Achilles, he simply let go of the ball… which resulted in an easy layup for Raptors.  For an athlete of the top caliber as KD, you would think he would have at least tried to call a time out… or try to pass the ball to a teammate in some way.  Remember when 49er NaVorro Bowan suffered a hugely painful — gruesome — knee injury against the Seahawks?  As he was writhing in pain, he still had the professional presence of mind to search for the ball — while flat on his back — and secure it.  It was one of the bravest moments I’ve ever seen in sports.  I kinda feel like KD could have… or maybe should have?… done something like that, too.

 

OK, enough odd thoughts.  I sincerely hope Kevin Durant heals fully and quickly, he absolutely deserves it.

And, among the many reasons why I want the Warriors to win, now chief among them is to get a ring for KD!  He absolutely deserves that, too.

I can’t tell if the flag has “codes” or not.

We appear to have them, but then I’ve also read where the Supreme Court overturned Flag Codes as unconstitutional a few years after the Pledge of Allegiance was deemed a violation of religious freedom, at least for non-military personnel.

Regardless, there are some things that I do know:

*  Kneeling is considered to be one of the most respectful acts in the world.

*  Colin Kaepernick’s protest was passive and peaceful, exactly what we all want to see in a protest.  He didn’t overturn any cars.  He didn’t bash the front windows of shop keepers.  He didn’t use hateful language.  He was just one guy in a sea of guys and all he did was kneel instead of stand.

*  There are lots of violations of Flag Codes that seem to go unmentioned, including the flag used in advertising (Section 8.i… there goes all the 4th of July marketing!) and the most ironic:  “The flag should never be carried flat or horizontally, but always aloft and free.”  (Section 8.c)  So everyone in a football stadium standing to respect the giant, HORIZONTAL flag covering the field is, in fact, disrespecting the flag.  The Kaep anger, in context, seems a bit hypocritical, no?

*  The NFL didn’t even require players to come out for the National Anthem until 2009, so it’s not like it was a long-standing traditional (pun intended!).

…AND…

I also know — as an employer — employees shouldn’t be doing personal things on company time.

So, ultimately, I don’t know why there’s a controversy.

If Colin Kaepernick — or any other American — wants to protest something… a freedom that we’ve fought wars over to protect… they should be allowed to do it peacefully… on their own time.

If they want to do it on company time, though, and what they’re protesting is not part of the job description, then they have the freedom to not do that job.

The NFL should have outlawed political expression after Week 3 of Kaepernick’s protest a few years back… in the same way they outlawed commercial expression in the 80’s… and it was a good thing they did, else every NFL player would look like a walking advertising billboard by now.

So maybe what everyone should really be upset about is why Roger Goodell, commissioner of the NFL, makes $40 million a year and can’t even put out a simple camp fire in his own backyard.

I’m a big Jimmy G. fan… as is everyone in the Bay Area.

However, I can remember being a big Colin Kaepernick fan as well… as it seemed everyone was in the Bay Area, too.

And why not?  Kaep ran wild against the mighty Packers in a playoff game.  He — single-handedly — was reinventing the quarterback position.  He brought us to Conference Championships and even the first Super Bowl in many years… came within a whisper of winning it, too.

I even remember a friend posing the ultimate question:  “Would you rather have an aging Aaron Rodgers leading your team into the future… or a fresh disruptor like Kaep?”  I remember at the time it feeling very much like a toss up.  Rodgers already had one MVP under his belt, but it is impossibly to deny that we were all still punch-drunk with Kaep’s u-n-l-i-m-i-t-e-d  p-o-t-e-n-t-i-a-l.

So, when everyone asks, “what could possibly go wrong with making Jimmy G. the highest-paid football player in the league after only starting seven games?!” it’s hard not to think we were all feeling just as giddy about Kaep at one point…

… a feeling that seemed to go away as fast as it came.

P.S.  With that said, I want to say for the record that I was one of the fans at this year’s incredible Niners-Titans game screaming, “Let Jimmy kick!  Let Jimmy play D!  Let Jimmy coach!”  Certainly seems like he can do anything he puts his mind to on a football field.  :)

Last year the Golden State Warriors had a commanding 3-1 lead over the Cleveland Cavaliers…

… and then Klay Thompson insultingly wore a freakin’ Dodger cap to AT&T Park and never apologized and the next thing you know the Cavs beat the Warriors 4-3.

This year the Golden State Warriors had a commanding 3-1 lead over the Cleveland Cavaliers…

… and then Klay Thompson had the good sense NOT to wear anything remotely looking like freakin’ Dodger blue… and, guess what?

The Warriors win the 2017 NBA Championship!

Coincidence?  As they say… ahem… “I THINK NOT!”

Congrats to all Warriors and Warrior fans!

2017 Warriors Win!

On Friday, May 12th, the Giants were the worst team in the Major Leagues.

That all changed with their HUGE 17 inning win that night against the Cincinnati Reds.

I was there for all 17 innings.  In fact, in a rarity, I was at the game about an hour early… so that’s about 6.5 hours of baseball for me!

By the end of the game… which ended just before 1am… there were only a couple dozen of us left in the park… you can see my picture of Buster Posey being greeted by his teammates after his game-ending homerun in the bottom of the 17th on the jumbotron… not a single soul in the bleechers.

From worst to first.  You heard it here… first.

SF Giants 17 inning win!

I believe the Giants had a season-changing win last night.

A young (almost) rookie Ty Blach will pitch against Mr. Universe Clayton Kershaw tonight.  This will tell us if its season changing or not.

For those that follow this blog, I thought Giants Skipper Bruce Bochy really mismanaged (blew!) the last two months of the 2016 season, including the last playoff game that could have sent the Giants to the World Series…

… and there’s no way the Cleveland Indians were going to beat the Giants in the World Series… the “even year” mojo would have been ON… ’10, ’12, ’14, AND ’16.

One of the many solutions open to Bochy last year was to put Ty Blach in the bullpen.  He didn’t.  And the Giants lost.

Tonight’s game is a reasonable proxy to see how this strategy would have worked.

Please stay tuned.

UPDATE:  The strategy would have worked GREAT!  Ty gave up 1 hit in 3 innings!  THAT would have taken us to the World Series… and beyond.

That also shows something else:  That Bochy’s “platooning” strategy of mathematically matching pitcher to hitter has big flaws.  The axiom in sports has ALWAYS been:  If someone has a hot hand, don’t take them out… let them play.

It’s just flat out weird that someone as experienced as Bochy doesn’t get that.

For the game, the Giants lost 2-1 but Blach pitched admirably well.  He gave up 4 hits and 2 runs in 5 innings… biggest issue was he’s been training as a reliever, not a starter, so apparently Bochy was concerned about arm strength/stamina/injury.

Welcome to the starting rotation, Ty!

Readers know I’m not so happy with Klay Thompson.  Common sense dictates wearing a f***ing Dodger hat to a Giants game is simply out-of-bounds.  The Cavs have had the Warriors number ever since.

But, over the weekend, I spoke to an in-the-know Warriors exec.  I, of course, voiced my Klay Thompson outrage… and he said, “you know, he got taken to task by the other players pretty good for that one.”

That is not the same thing as an apology.  But it’s nice to know the Warrior players (unlike Warrior management) care enough about their SF Giant fanbase to police their own on this one.

And, somehow, the fog that Thompson cast upon the Warriors magically started to lift:  Warriors 126 Cavs 91.

Still waiting for an apology… most likely will be waiting forever… but it’s a start.